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Pakistan reports over 1800 COVID-19 cases, 34 deaths

ISLAMABAD: The number of coronavirus cases are surging in the country as the total number of cases are set to hit the grim 350,000 mark.

According to the last statistics from the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), 1808 people tested positive for COVID-19 and 34 more died due to the infection in the country over the last 24 hours. Around 349,992 cases have been reported so far ever since the virus emerged in the country. The death toll from the disease stands at 7,055.

The number of patients who have recovered from the virus has reached 320,849. There are now 22,088 active cases in the country. 36,686 tests were conducted during the last 24 hours and the country has so far carried out 4810182 tests.

Sindh has the highest number of recorded cases with 152,072 infections followed by Punjab 108,221, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 41,258, Balochistan 16,226 while Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan recorded 5041 and 4409 cases respectively.

Special Assistant to Prime Minister on National Health Services Dr Faisal Sultan has said the second wave of coronavirus can be controlled through collective resolve and by taking responsibilities as one nation.

He said the severity of this wave has not been taken seriously without an iota of doubt by the majority of the people whereas it was time when more vigorous actions at regional and national levels are needed. He said the decision to limit outdoor activities shows the government’s commitment to curtail the pandemic.

The NCOC has called for banning large public gatherings and enhancing restrictions in high risk areas due to the resurgence of COVID-19. A meeting of the NCOC chaired by Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar in Islamabad reviewed the situation in the country and suggested certain urgent measures to National Coordination Committee to check the spread of the pandemic.

This includes a ban on all public gatherings of more than 500 people, early and extended winter vacations, closure of cinemas, theatres and shrines with immediate effect, and only outdoor dining till 10 pm at restaurants and takeaway. The NCOC decided that only outdoor marriages with an upper limit of 500 people will be allowed from 20th November.

The forum was told that the disease had increased three folds since the NCOC recommended banning large public gatherings and outdoor activities on 12 October. It was briefed that there is an increasing positivity ratio in educational institutions and there is a need to check this trend.

The forum decided that the Federal Minister for Education would chair a special meeting on 16th November at NCOC with provincial education ministers to assess and review the prevailing situation in educational institutions. After consultative discussions, the recommendations would be shared with the provinces for consequent decision and enforcement.